Tag Archives: Sunnis

Calitics Endorses The Responsible Plan To End The War In Iraq

Mary Pallant’s support of the Responsible Plan marks the fifth Congressional challenger in California to endorse.  At Calitics, we feel that this is a plan that not only makes sense for Congressional candidates but progressive organizations and grassroots groups as well.  Therefore, the editorial board of Calitics proudly endorse the Responsible Plan and urge all candidates for federal office in the state to follow suit, be they challengers or incumbents.

Given the current situation in Iraq, leaving 60,000 or 80,000 troops to babysit the Iraqis will do about as much as having 160,000 troops do the same; in other words, nothing at all (Russ Feingold understands this).  There is no military solution and the goals of the surge have not been met; indeed what meager gains have been established have now essentially vanished, as Basra, Baghdad and beyond grow more violent.  Until the fundamental question – whether a continued presence in Iraq is making us safer now and in the future – is addressed, we’re doing nothing but spinning our wheels.  Keeping troops in the region to try and put a lid on violence until George Bush is safely tucked away creates a huge moral hazard which actually increases the potential for chaos.

The Responsible Plan reflects the opinion of a significant wing of the Democratic Party which is simply not willing to wait around anymore while the leadership in Washington tries to come up with a coherent endgame strategy.  Well over 50 Congressional challengers have endorsed the plan, understanding that a comprehensive strategy to end the war and repair the broken institutions that enabled it not only makes political sense but is absolutely vital to our national security.  Ilan Goldenberg sums up the plan nicely.

For the past two years, Democrats have been offering plan after plan to end the war in Iraq. But this one is different. As opposed to the usual broad language, combined with a laundry list of policy proposals that make up traditional party platforms, the plan has a sharp focus, with a clear strategic logic focused around two fundamental principles. First, the United States must find a way to sensibly end its military mission in Iraq–and use the political, diplomatic, humanitarian, and economic tools at its disposal to mitigate the negative consequences of the war. Second, the Iraq War has done irreparable damage not just to Iraq but to our country, and the time has come to reform our institutions and put the checks and balances in place to ensure that these mistakes are not repeated […]

“A Responsible Plan” would instead serve as the congressional corollary to a Democratic presidency. It doesn’t include elements over which Congress has little control, but it does push for 15 pieces of existing legislation, which focus on issues such as improving healthcare for a new generation of veterans and phasing out our reliance on military contractors such as Blackwater. Only the president can end the war in Iraq, but Congress can do its share by focusing on institutional repair and funding the right programs.

This approach is apparent in the most creative part of the document, titled “Preventing Future Iraqs.” These policies focus on checking presidential authority and ensuring that Congress can’t easily give the president a free hand to go to war. It calls for incorporating war funding into the regular defense budget instead of using “emergency supplementals”; eliminating the president’s use of signing statements to alter the substantive meaning of a law passed by Congress; repealing parts of the Military Commissions Act that suspended habeas corpus; and ending the use of wiretapping without a FISA warrant. These are good policies for both Republican and Democratic presidents to abide by.

Without a robust Congressional counterbalance to executive power, we will not be able to stop more Iraqs.  Co-author of the plan Darcy Burner and the dozens of endorsers are not only running to enter Congress but to restore the institution itself.  

This Wednesday I’m helping host a low-dollar fundraising event for Darcy in Los Angeles, where she will be flanked by netroots activists like myself, Dante Atkins (hekebolos), Todd Beeton (MyDD), Digby, John Amato (Crooks and Liars), Arianna Huffington and Rick Jacobs, as well as at least two California candidates who have endorsed the plan, Ron Shepston (CA-42) and Mary Pallant (CA-24).  If you want to reward and recognize true leadership and courage, join me in Los Angeles on Wednesday night.  All the information is at this ActBlue page, and you can donate before the event at the link as well.  I’ll add the text of the invitation below.


Darcy Burner almost beat Dave Reichert to win the Congressional Seat from WA-08 in 2006, and she’s back for a second run! The Republicans are scared-they’ve already send both George AND Laura Bush to raise money for Reichert.

Reichert has the Bushes, but Darcy Burner has us-and she’ll be in Los Angeles on April 9th.

Darcy is a solid progressive candidate: she is not only the co-author of the Responsible Plan to End the War in Iraq, but also a leader on other progressive issues like telecom immunity and net neutrality.

And she’s not just a wonderful candidate; she’s a wonderful person too. Please take this opportunity to see Darcy in person:

Date: April 9, 2008

Time: 6:00 to 8:00 pm


Home of Rick Jacobs and Shaun Kadlec

1556 Courtney Avenue

Los Angeles, California. 90046

Grassroots friend: $25.00

Blograiser: $100.00

Host: $500.00

Sponsor: $1,000

Join our growing list of hosts in supporting and contributing to Darcy Burner:

Dante Atkins (hekebolos), Rick Jacobs and Shaun Kadlec, Digby, Dave Dayen (dday),

Arianna Huffington (huffingtonpost), Ron Shepston, candidate for Congress, CA-42, Todd Beeton (MyDD.com), John Amato (crooksandliars.com), and Sal Rosselli!

To RSVP and make your contribution online, go to the bottom of the page. If you would rather contribute by check or credit card at the door, please RSVP to [email protected], and bring your contribution with you to the event.